Most of us do not think about the water we drink. We turn on the taps, fill our glasses, and drink. But how safe is the water we drink?
Even though the government, through its various agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to ensure that drinking water and its infrastructure are safe from contamination, this has not always been the case. West Virginia and Flint water contamination crisis have demonstrated the need to take personal responsibility on the water we drink. Here are some of the ways you can use to ensure your drinking water is safe.
Contact Local Authority for Information on Water Quality
Local governments are expected to regularly updated information on the quality of water in their area. In addition, they should also keep track of the quality of water infrastructure in their areas. Whenever you need to know the quality of your drinking water, visiting your local authority for this information is a good place to start. In some instances, your local authority will refer you to the local water utility company that is legally required to provide you with an annual report that contains information on the quality of water.
Filter Your Water
Filtering your water is one of the best ways to keep your water safe. Home filtering systems add a second layer of protection, especially if local utility companies provide your water. There are several types of water filters and filtration systems you can use, including Reverse Osmosis filters, Activated Carbon filters, or Ion Exchange water treatment system. The type of filter you select depends on several factors, including specific contaminants in your water that you need to remove.
Know Where Your Water Supply Comes From
It is important to know which water utility provider is supplying your water. A given area can be served by several water utility companies with each providing different levels of water quality. If you are not confident about the quality of water from your water utility company, you can opt to get your own bottled water supply from a private label bottled water company. Bottled water has an increased level of scrutiny, which makes it much safer and of a higher quality than the water supplied by utility companies. Bottled water is regulated by the FDA as food, meaning it has to go through stringent quality checks before getting a stamp of approval from the FDA.
Regular Test Water from Private Sources
If you get your drinking water from a well or other private sources like dams, rivers or lakes, it is your primary responsibility to ensure it is safe for drinking. Local authority rules that govern safe drinking water do not apply to private water sources. Regularly testing your water will help you know its level of contamination if any, and help you put in place countermeasures. The best way to test water quality in your private water source is to reach out to a certified water testing lab.
Check Your Plumbing
In the event you test your water and find the presence of heavy metals such as lead and copper, it could be as a result of using old, rusty, or corroded water pipes. Such pipes contaminate your water with these heavy metals that can lead to serious health issues if left unchecked. Every few years, it is advisable to have a professional plumber look at all your plumbing and replace any old, rusty or corroded pipes.
Drinking clean and safe water is very critical as it directly affects our health and well being. Everyone should take personal responsibility in ensuring they drink water that is clean and safe.